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Chat in foreign languages or discuss language-learning.
10 posts • Page 1 of 1
Question to Winston, Rock, Ladislav, Steve, and many other experienced Philippines travelers:
When you are in the Philippines, how often would people speak Tagalog to you?
Here, people would often speak to me in Tagalog, or I would speak it to them too. But I can't speak it "rapid-fire machine-gun style" like the native speakers can, so when I start speaking more, they might switch to English or Taglish instead. Those of you who've heard Tagalog a lot would probably know what I mean.
Many people from the provinces aren't very fluent in English, and would often need to have whatever was said in English repeated a few times.
The good thing about this is that I can sometimes get away with "being Filipino," and hence get local rates instead of the foreigner rip-offs, hehe.
Last edited by Falcon on September 4th, 2013, 4:07 pm, edited 2 times in total.
I mean in Tagalog-speaking areas of course.
Trike drivers and other guys working the streets stick to speaking Tagalog with me the most. The lower they are on the socioeconomic scale, the more Tagalog they'd want to speak with me. And vice versa.
But would Filipinos, regardless of social class, want to speak only English when they see a white guy or visibly distinct NE Asian foreigner (esp. Koreans, who stick out more among non-Filipino Asians)?
Agree with Falcon. If they know you are not Filipino they'll either try to speak English to you or not say anything.
Well in Angeles, trike drivers like to constantly shout out (in English) "trike, trike!" if they see any visitor within 50 yards and since there are so many of them, you hear that a lot. It annoys the hell outta Winston lol.
Falcon, put yourself in an Filipino's shoes. If u saw an obvious white person (not ambiguous looking like some Filipinos), would you speak to him or her in Tagalog??? What percentage of whites in the Phils. are like Lad who can speak Tag (plus Visayan)? Heck, a lot of the ones you see in Manila are just tourists or visitors? If I was a Filipino, it would never cross my mind to speak to a white in Tagalog. The chances of him understanding are probably under 1%.
You mean unprovoked? About 3-6% speak it to me. The rest either speak broken English or sit there silent, sullen and don't say anything. Some smile and don't say anything. Some walk on by stooped, giving me side glances filled with moist sadness and shyness.
If you walk into a room of Filipinos speaking their language, they often immediately switch to English.
When they are spoken to in Tagalog, then they in 70% of cases reply in Tagalog. Some 10% say-" Oh, marunong ka pala magtagalog. Ang asawa mo Filipina?" "Oh, you can speak Tagalog, is your wife a Filipina?" These people somehow associate language ability with having a wife ( not studying a book)
Some 5% reply in tense, terse English even if spoken to in Tagalog while looking nervous and uptight. All the smiles are gone.
In some faraway provinces, they speak to you in Tagalog because they don't know English and Tagalog is not their language either so they use it as a foreign language.
A white Tagalog speaker is an oxymoron and does not exist in the mind of an average Filipino. Some react as if they heard fish talk. Or a cat bark.
This kind of behavior- a left over from colonial/military occupation is prevalent throughout the Mongoloid world.
A rare event, as rare as a four leave clover would be for a Filipino ( or Japanese, Korean, Chinese, etc.,) to ask you for directions even you have lived in that town for 20 years but they have just arrived.
To me, this behavior is illogical and unreasonable. After all, they are in their country and I am the one who should adjust to them. The way it would be in Europe and the Americas. A foreigner in Costa Rica is expected to speak Spanish and is addressed in Spanish.
Their heads are just screwed on differently, I guess.
That is malaKING titi.. I recommend buying a Tagalog grammar book and studying it for a month.
A brain is a terrible thing to wash!
I have bought a couple of mga aklat, Ladislav. I keep forgetting about the ng at the end of adjectives. I also have trouble with active and passive verbs. I know what active and passive means, but the examples of each that I've come across don't seem to have anything to do with active or passive. It's the weirdest aspect of the language, for me.
It took me 6 months of strenuous study to start getting used to the passive form. Or to put together rudimentary one mile long words. It'll all settle in through drilling and repetition after 1-2 hours study a day for several months. Then, you should start reading Tagalog romance and use answers.yahoo.com to find out what strange phrases and words mean that are not found in any dictionary. Count on another 4-6 months. Then some 3 months of actual speaking. You may want to do those simultaneously either by paying a tutor on Skype once/twice a week or you may want to try to find one for free on a language exchange site although they all speak English and you may want to teach them Spanish or something.
Then go to the Philippines and enjoy being the only white guy in 1000 square miles who can speak Tagalog. And watching the proud Americans, Aussies and Euros who pointedly don't speak a word of the language get all these cute girls.
But no amount of money can buy anyone a second language. Or closeness that it brings.
But the way the masses of people will take up to you will be great. You will often be treated as a family member. The warmth is just amazing.
A brain is a terrible thing to wash!
i find it quite strange that more westerners don't make the effort to learn tagalog, especially considering the potential advantage, woman-wise. I'm in the UK, and I have no immediate plans to go there, and I have no idea if I ever will, but I'm still learning it (slowly, on and off) because I like chatting to filipinas online. So I'm in no rush. But if I was definitely planning on going there I'd be at it every day.